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Gaining Real World Experience

In a democracy that is diverse, globally engaged, and dependent on citizen responsibility, all students need an informed concern for the larger good because nothing less will renew our fractured and diminished commons.


As you begin your search for co-curricular real world experiences don't forget to utilize your faculty and academic department network of resources. Additionally, the Alumni Association and the Career Center are wonderful conduits for connecting to mentors, shadowing experiences and a host of other resources throughout your time at Vanderbilt not just for job/career searches during senior year. Check out the Dean of Students webpage to find a list of 17 plus departments offering services and programs to address holistic needs and interest. Below are just a few examples of what you will find at the various sites. If your web search doesn't produce the answer you seek, then contact the SIA office to meet with a staff member who will assist you.

Vanderbilt Undergraduate Summer Research Program (VUSRP)


The idea is to provide students with direct experience in a work setting—usually related to their career interests—and to give them the benefit of supervision and coaching from professionals in the field. (From 2008 AACU high impact article)

The Vandy on Madison Avenue Internship Program is a summer opportunity designed to help Vanderbilt students find their way in the real-world labyrinth of New York City. Vandy on Madison Avenue picks up where the strong classroom foundation of Vanderbilt leaves off, providing real-world experience in the Media & Communications industry.

Experiential and Service Learning

Learning by doing, whether in service to others or in the pursuit of one's personal interest, fosters real world experiences that enhance knowledge and skills.  These real world experiences have the greatest impact when students are actively involved and are engaged in meaningful reflection.

Dean of Students Office of Active Citizenship and Service (OACS) specializes in supporting experiential and service learning experiences for students.  Feel free to schedule a meeting with an OACS staff member to discuss the  opportunities or programs you are looking for.

Service Opportunities Bulletin Board

Postgraduate Service Opportunities

Get in Touch & Get Involved

  • On Facebook: search for OACS at Vanderbilt
  • On Twitter: follow us at OACSatVandy
  • On YouTube: search VIEW Internship

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Personal Support

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Rietta Turner

Assistant Director of Strategic Initiatives and Assessment; 615-322-6834

Kelsey Roberts

Graduate Assistant

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